My Outdoor Gear Locker

Discussion in 'Outdoor World' started by JK47, May 17, 2018.

  1. JK47

    JK47 The Beer Houdini

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    After almost 20 years without being on a camping trip, a real honest to goodness tent adventure. I've decided to start gathering the supplies to head back out into the wild, or as wild as Southern California can get. I think getting back into fishing (particularly surf fishing, which is new to me and quite fun) has helped me start to appreciate the outdoor life again.

    I'll post and discuss a few interesting items over the next few weeks as they arrive in preparation for my first adventure. I intend to do and overnight, maybe two night hike to kick things off, hopefully starting on a weekday when the National Forest's trails aren't stuffed to capacity.

    This first piece of gear probably won't be brought along on an overnight hike, but a vehicle camping trip when I'm not relying on freeze dried meals for sake of space and weight in my pack. I'm a long time fan of Snow Peak camping gear, and have had their Titanium Solo combo mini pot, and nesting cup, as well as their tiny stove that hides perfectly inside the pot with a single can of fuel, and of course the titanium spork, for at least 13 years. I would bring this with me on fishing day trips in the canyons and mountains around Vancouver to boil some water for coffee and freeze dried meals. I always admired the clever ingenuity of Snow Peak, and when I saw this thing recently, I knew I had to have it.
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    This is the smaller of the two cutting board/knife combo's, and retails for $40. I just oiled the wood to help prevent it from drying out and cracking/warping.

    Snow Peak is generally more expensive than similar stuff from other outfits, but for the most part it is still made in Japan and is of top notch quality.

    Stay tuned, more interesting gear and the reason's behind the purchase coming up.
     
  2. muse

    muse Almost "Made"

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    I've had quite a fair bit of outdoor experience and living in the bush, and one lesson I learnt pretty early on is to never ever skimp on the essentials. A hundred quid of savings means shit when you're hunkering down inside your tent braving a torrential downpour and being smashed by 80kmph winds, wondering if your cheap ass purchase from Amazon is going to be uprooted and blown away with you inside...

    Snow Peak stuff is legit! Great quality, not over-designed, and prices are quite alright in Taiwan where I get a chunk of my outdoor gear. I've used one of their titanium cooking set for a while and it's lightweight, packs down, and is easy to clean. The most annoying thing about shitty camping cookware are handles which are poorly made/designed, have poor ergonomics, material which starts to wear off, and are just cumbersome to use and maintain.

    I've never had the opportunity so far, but having the tools and means to actually prepare a proper meal out there must be pretty nice. Just to gather in a small group, settle down in nice spot, lay out the utensils and enjoy the spread.

    Looking forward to reading your upcoming entries!
     
  3. fraggler

    fraggler A Happy & Busy Life

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    I already posted this in my thread, but since Snow Peak gear is being discussed here: Was going to grab some cheap aluminum cookware from Amazon but showed my girlfriend some Snow Peak titanium sets and now she wants those. Budget about to get wrecked and I just started...
     
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  4. JK47

    JK47 The Beer Houdini

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    More Snow Peak porn !!!

    My OG set
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    You can fit two of small Snow Peaks fuel canisters inside, in lieu of the stove.
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    I have burned my lips many times sipping hot brew from these. I just discovered the Snow Peaks hot lips, pretty much mandatory drinking hot beverages. Titanium heats up very quickly and gets VERY HOT, but it also cools quickly...
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    These showed up today
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    Not very big (pan is 5.75"), but can do a small meal if needed. This stuff is LIGHT !!!
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    Last but not least the Soto coffee drip (another made in Japan gem). It comes with 10 coffee filters, or you can use #2 filters with a fold mod.
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    Oh, did I mention it compress's near flat and nest's inside the pot and pan
    combo. OH YEAH, BRUTHA !!!
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    Remember that Titanium can get very hot, the handles can burn if picked up immediately with unprotected hands, and unless boiling water the container must be kept moving over the flame or your food will burn to the bottom. It's the price you pay for the feather weight pack weight.

    EDIT: Added Snow Peak micro spatula (not it's real name, but mighty small)

    Barely large enough to flip an egg, maybe better off with quail eggs. It should be ok with a few strips of bacon and scrambled eggs.
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    Folded, it can easliy be tucked away into the Snow peaks 3 piece pot and pan set, even with the Soto coffee drip.
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    Last edited: May 19, 2018
  5. JK47

    JK47 The Beer Houdini

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    Another package arrived yesterday. A Wiggy's outer sleeping bag to complete their FTRSS system. I had a 0℉ bag of theirs for years. It rode in my truck as an emergency item when I drove 17 hours to work from Montana/North Dakota to Ft. McMurray, Alberta. There were a lot of lonely stretches of road that you may not be found for a while in an accident. Together the two bags can be combined inside each other to form a -40℉ option, or zipped facing each other to form a double wide for two people (one person will have the hood portion in their face).

    Wiggy's bags come in a mummy style or a rectangular style, with or without hood. I like the rectangular style, mummy bags are to confining for me. These bags use a synthetic fill that is bulkier than down, and won't compress down as small, but they stay warm when wet. An old friend I worked with years ago turned me onto Wiggy's bag. When he was a contractor in the Middle East during the many conflicts there, he told me many of the people swore by their Wiggy bags to keep them warm in adverse conditions.

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    Each bag comes with a pillow filled with the same synthetic fiber.
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    The Lighter outer back has two sets of zippers, one to mate the inner bag, and one to close the system up tight.
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    I plan on using the lighter bag on it's own for summer and the heavier bag on it's own in the fall and winter or when camping at altitude. I doubt I'll ever need to combine them inside each other, but it's nice to have that option, and there's a good chance I'll be using them facing each other for double occupancy.

    There are a few zipper options, such as right and left side zippers, so bags can be joined side by side (and prevents the hood from being in your face, I'm sure the ladies will not put up with sleeping on that side), rather than laid flat on top of each other and zipped

    Wiggy's bags are made in the USA, and reasonably priced compared to other bags. Wiggy himself can be a bit of a jerk and reminds me of some other ornery old timers that make gear in the USA.
     
  6. brencho

    brencho Friend

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    Nice @JK47 I love wiggys bags. Used to have one, and it took a beating.
     
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  7. JK47

    JK47 The Beer Houdini

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    A shelter I have lusted over for a long time, has finally arrived. The Hennessy Hammock ! It's their biggest and baddest, the Safari Deluxe Zip (good for 7' foot 350lb linebackers, or two cozy people). I set it up on the PCH after work today when I got home.

    This is the hammock and all straps in the bag, next to it is the rainfly inside the Hennessy snake skin, and MSR mini stakes.
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    This thing is legit
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    Rainfly added, and stakes pounded into the ground with a mini crescent wrench.
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    This will be my forest or beach with palm tree's shelter option . Thanks to @fraggler for the heads up on the REI sale, I picked up the same Half Dome 2 Plus tent for roomier accomodations, or fussy camping girls that don't want to live the hammock life. The HD2+ looks like a killer deal and get's solid reviews.
     
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  8. JustAnotherRando

    JustAnotherRando My other bike is a Ferrari

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    Damn, I bought a Hennessy Hammock years back, used it once and then my lifestyle changed completely (changed country, had kids). Haven't used it since.

    I've been trying to convince the wife to let me set it up in the living room under the guise of "the kids will love it" but she's not buying that angle.
     
  9. JK47

    JK47 The Beer Houdini

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    A few new items on the camping adventure front have been aquired...

    This
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    With this quick and easily removable option
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    Screw you BMW Adventure bike, I will kick your ass on the trail and still hit 100mph on the freeway with ease (mind you, it will be a little sketchy with wind, but 80mph is no problemo).

    With this more minimalist camping vehicle I needed more compact sleeping bag to match my hammock. @MrTeaRex brought to my attention the camping quilt. I had never heard of this before and after some studying I ended up with the Enlightened Equipment Revelation 850 Downtek 20℉ quilt, and no it's not the made in China Assdrop edition, it's the OG made in USA, moisture repelling, down model. Most quilts are made to order and take 3-8 weeks depending on manufacture, but I snagged this one from amazon, and it arrived in 3 days.
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    It can act like a blanket, or you can zip and cinch the bottom, or even snap and buckle the back to make a cocoon.
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    This thing is stupid light and can scrunch down to almost nothing with an aftermarket stuff sack.
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    PS... I hereby officially announce the start of Summer, a week early !!!

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    The cheap beer enables me to purchase quality pieces of gear that will last a lifetime, not one gulp.
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2018
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  10. LetMeBeFrank

    LetMeBeFrank Won't tell anyone my name is actually Francis

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    Awesome bike!

    P.S. I love that Modelo Negra.
     
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  11. pedalhead

    pedalhead Friend

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    Great choice on the Enlightened Equipment Revelation quilt. Absolutely love mine. Best quality/value/pack size/etc combo I've seen.
     
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  12. captkirk

    captkirk Khan's BFF

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    @JK47

    Are those Happy Trails bags? I had a set of those on an older R1150GS tractor...

    Good bags, but if unfinished on the interior, watch out for silver dust on all your goodies.

    And nice choice on the Snow Peak gear, and that lip saver ( wiggity wut ?)... that’s rad. I always had to carry an extra cup. :rolleyes:
     
  13. JK47

    JK47 The Beer Houdini

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    The rack and aluminum bags (the name pannier makes me cringe) are made by Tusk and only cost $400 for both bags and the rack. The medium size bags are 27L which I have, vs 37L for the large. The bags are top notch and feel well built, basically the are built like a surplus ammo can. The rack needed some finagling to make it fit, I had to enlarge a few of the bolt holes to make it line up when mounting, but $400 for hard luggage and a rack is quite the bargain.

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    I also have supermoto wheels on the way. This bike is way more fun than any of the dozen sport bikes I have owned, including the Japanese manufacture's offerings in various sizes (600cc, 750cc, 900cc,1000cc), as well as a Ducati 916. Still own two Harleys, and looking to sell one.
     
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  14. pedalhead

    pedalhead Friend

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    This is a slippery slope. Next, you'll be converting an old postal van and living the life of a nomad ;-)
     
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  15. captkirk

    captkirk Khan's BFF

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    Agreed, for sure.

    Of the sport bikes I’ve owned and ridden, none have surpassed the dual sport/ adv sport bikes for ease of riding enjoyment. High HP bikes are fun, but the power means squat IMO on B roads.
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2018
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  16. Thad E Ginathom

    Thad E Ginathom Friend

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    Awesome sleeping bag! Erm... Multifunctional quilt/duvet/bag/etc. Looks very cosy.
     
  17. JK47

    JK47 The Beer Houdini

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    Just got back from a mini adventure an hour ago. I decide to try out some of my camping gear yesterday and headed out a little after 5pm to the Cleveland National Forest. More specifically the Blue Jay Campground located a few miles off the 74 Ortega Hwy. I chose Blue Jay because it had potable water, restrooms, fire pits, and was a safe bet after being away from the camping life for a loooong time. I arrived around 6:30pm and began setting up shop.
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    @MrTeaRex warned me when he brought quilts to my attention that it would be wise to get an insulated sleeping pad or a under bag when living the hammock life. When sleeping in a hammock, a sleeping bag gets compressed and loses it's insulation properties on your back, not to mention getting scrunched up and annoying while sleeping, hence the streamlined quilt. I can confirm my butt, spine and shoulders were chilly during the night when temperatures dipped down to the low 50's (confirmed by my Casio Protrek during early morning bathroom breaks). I'm not sure if I'm going to get an under bag like the http://www.hammockgear.com/incubator-econ-20/ due to the 8 week wait, or use a ultra light insulated pad (I do have a large Klymit insulated pad for my car camping set up, but it's too big for motorcycle adventures, packs larger than my quilt!)... Other than being chilled a little, the hammock was super comfortable and relaxing.

    Morning coffee $$$ shot
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    The hammock slides into these sleeves called snake skins, making it super quick to deploy and pack up in a jiffy. The rainfly also packs into their own set of snake skins (not shown).
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    The other reason I chose the Blue Jay Campground was easy access to a dirt (more like loose, broken rock) road to Santiago Peak, the highest peak in Orange County (sorry real house wives, it's not your tits).

    Oops, missed the turn off the pavement and got this shot of Lake Elsinore, and my bearings. A little gloomy at 7am...
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    Until you get to higher elevation on the right path, and get above the clouds !! This wasn't even the top !!
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    The top was a little anti climatic with a shit load of radio/cell/comm towers and various little buildings, but the view was spectacular.
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    How do I get to the road that runs along that ridge? I just bought a California Recreational Roads Atlas, I will find you ridge road and become the real "Ridge Racer" one day. IMG_1054.JPG
    Protrek altitude function close to spec
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    I wore full armor, Upper body (chest, shoulders, elbows), armor shorts (zero skid marks to report, but came close a few times), articulating knee/shin pads, and full on enduro boots. Also a full tool kit and tire patch/pump kit.

    The road if you can call it that is wide enough for one vehicle and has a vertical drop on one side that you DO NOT want to go off, and very few pull outs to let oncoming vehicles pass, that's why I chose a week day to try it out. On the way back I took a fork that brings you to Interstate 15 and that was a lot more friendly albeit quite sandy in some spots.

    I forgot to air down my tires going up, and I'm sure that was a contributing factor to a few pucker moments. I aired the tires down on my descent the slope and it was much nicer and enjoyable.

    I think my next excursion will be into @brencho's back yard, The Angeles National Forest. Dude there are so many hiking trails/campgrounds and a few offroad vehicle trails in that sucker, it's unreal. It's like a Treasure chest of outdoor fun.

    I'm not sure if I'll be taking my bike/car/hiking the next time out, but it will be another solid refreshing experience. I do have some bulkier stuff that needs a car and does not fit the fast and light approach, hmm, we'll see.

    ...And as always I do carry bear repellent.

    EDIT: no longer able to upload hi-res pic's :(
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2018
  18. fraggler

    fraggler A Happy & Busy Life

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    What table and chair do you have? Those are next on my list.
     
  19. JK47

    JK47 The Beer Houdini

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    Last edited: Jun 18, 2018
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  20. BillOhio

    BillOhio Friend

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    I'm calling Bullshit. I lived in Ohio for the great majority of my life and there is no forest in Cleveland.
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2018

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